A daredevil photographer captures the cinematic beauty of California’s wildfires
The French Fire burns overnight in the Sierra National Forest near the town of North Fork, CA on August 1st, 2014.
Image: Stuart Palley
We may earn a commission from links on this page.
Thanks to California’s historic four-year drought, some specialists are now referring to frequent wildfires as a “new normal” for the state. For the past two years, Los Angeles-based photographer Stuart Palley has been chasing these flare-ups to capture their unusual beauty.
“The fires move fast and you need to get there on the first night of the fire to capture its most intense behavior,” Palley told Quartz. “Two years ago I left my own birthday party early to go photograph a fire.”
Taken with a long-exposure or under a starry night sky, the 27-year-old’s shots of flames and smoke engulfing hills, forests, roads and homes are hair-raisingly gorgeous.